CGF in the News on the SEQ

From the article: Add the Growth Pocket: Southeast quadrant has to be addressed and included in the City’s General Plan process

By Michael Moore in the Morgan Hill Times on 2/27/14

A Santa Clara County commission tasked with approving or denying the City of Morgan Hill’s Southeast Quadrant annexation issued a blistering critique of the project as the public comment period for the draft environmental report on the controversial proposal came to a close last week.

The comments and questions submitted by the Santa Clara County Local Agency Formation Commission – as well as those from the Planning Commission and other parties in response to the draft Environmental Impact Report – will be reviewed by City staff and consultants over the coming months.

For now, City officials are not commenting in depth on the 23-page, Feb. 18 letter from LAFCO staff and the agency’s attorneys claiming the roughly 750-acre annexation proposal is in violation of state environmental law, the City’s own General Plan, the County’s land use guidelines and LAFCO’s policies.

One criticism contained in the letter from LAFCO Executive Officer Neelima Palacherla is that not including the SEQ study in the current comprehensive General Plan update is a violation of the California Environmental Quality Act.

the Committee for Green Foothills responded to the draft EIR by calling the City’s SEQ plans “indefensible” and the LAFCO attorneys’ legal opinion “devastating” to the City’s plans.

“The EIR lacks credible disclosure and analysis of the significant environmental impacts to farmland, viewsheds, special status species, greenhouse gas emissions, growth inducement and a riparian corridor, just to name of few,” stated part of a web post by CFG Environmental Advocate Julie Hutcheson, a Morgan Hill resident. The CFG submitted a 20-page comment to the City in response to the draft EIR.

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